Kelso

Details

Name: Kelso Conservation Area
Address: 5234 Kelso Road
Milton, ON, L9T 2X7
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kelso_Conservation_Area
Website: http://www.hrca.on.ca/ShowCategory.cfm?subCatID=1085
Trail Map: http://www.hrca.on.ca/ShowCategory.cfm?subCatID=1226
Maps are also freely available at the parking entrances.
Fees: Yes. Check website for current rates.
Trail Reviews: http://trails.mtbr.com
http://www.singletracks.com
http://www.canadatrails.ca
http://www.trailpeak.com
http://www.trailfu.com

Parking

Summit Gatehouse
(Main parking lot for mountain bikers)
5301 Steeles Ave W
Milton, ON L9T 7L3

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Main Gate
(General parking lot)
5234 Kelso Road
Milton, ON, L9T 2X7

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Review

With are over 22 km of scenic trails for off-road mountain biking, cyclist will quickly discover a great variety of terrain that offers a little bit of everything.

  • Double track trails for novices to enjoy.
  • A stunt park in addition to numerous a-frames, skinnies, and ramps scattered throughout the trails.
  • A mini downhill section.
  • Fast flowy trails.
  • A couple of rocky sections.
  • A couple of hills and a ski hill to climb.

In addition, they may also discover the following about the park.

  • The trail crew do a great job of maintaining the trails and cleaning up fallen trees.
  • Trails are fairly well marked.
  • Trail maps are free at the entrances.
  • The map is upside down as south is on the top. Can be a little counter intuitive when reading the map, but it makes sense given the logistic of the mountain bike trails. Ski hills are on the bottom (North), high point is on the top (South).
  • Toilet facilities.
  • It’s a fantastic place to visit during the fall season, when the leaves are changing colors.
  • Hilton Falls, is just north of the 401 for even more off-road mountain biking fun. It’s a five minute drive, north on Appleby Line, from the Summit Gatehouse.

Kelso is definitely a fun place that offers a lot of variety with some scenic views of the Niagara Escarpment. Trails are well divided and marked into different sections, so cyclist will know what to expect. In other words, cyclist won’t suddenly find themselves on a downhill course.

Variety is also the key as listed above.

There isn’t a lot of any particular trail type; though, the mini-downhill course is the only local option. The next closest option is Blue Mountain which is a 2 hour drive from Kelso. Unfortunately, the ski chair lifts are often closed in the summer, thus walking or cycling up the ski hill may be the only option.

Man made stunts are a plenty and scattered throughout the park. The stunts are approved and maintained by Conservation Halton. However, they can still be dangerous to inexperienced cyclist. Fortunately they are off the main trail, making them easily visible and avoidable.

As for parking, there are two options. The Main Gate and the Summit Gatehouse. For easier access to the lake and other facilities, use the Main Gate. However, cyclist will have to climb the ski hill to get to the cycling trail. For immediate access to the mountain biking trails and stunts, use the Summit Gatehouse.

Finally, there is a park entrance fee. It is definitely worth it for the variety of trails offered. In addition, the park entrance fee is for a Conservation Halton daily pass, which includes mountain biking at both Kelso & Hilton Falls. Alternatively, annual passes (good for one year from date of purchase) are also available.

In the end, Kelso is great for the fun variety it offers. However, if a cyclist is looking specifically for a particular type of trail (i.e. only rocks), then it may be better to head elsewhere.

Related News Item(s):

Related Photo(s):

Kelso Conservatio Area (10/09/13)

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Kelso Conservatio Area (07/24/13)

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Kelso Conservatio Area (05/24/13)

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Kelso Conservatio Area (05/16/13)

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Kelso Conservatio Area (05/01/13)

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Kelso Conservatio Area (05/01/13): Turkey Vulture

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Kelso Conservatio Area (04/30/13)

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